Can it really be only 10 days ago we arrived in Montisi? I'll try to catch up!
We left the Rome apartment knowing we would be back in our lovely neighborhood again another time. Massimo's driver loaded up all our luggage and BAGS of food to take to Montisi, and we managed the Auto Europe pick up with no problems. It was a warm sunny day as we made our way to Tuscany where the poppies were blooming. We were excited to see our friends, Jerry and Paul, Sandi, Holly and Rick, and our hosts, Gail and John. After a quick lunch stop, we arrived in tiny Montisi, a charming little medieval town near Sinalunga.
After a brief hello, we headed into SInalunga to do grocery shopping for dinner at the COOP. I had a list, and we knew the drill of Italian grocery stores. Plastic gloves go on before picking out produce, weigh and lable your own veggies! We were given one Italian refrigerator of the 2 in the kitchen to fill. Think half size! We needed stuff for two dinners and a lunch, PLUS the 10 kilos of cheese I brought from Rome in a huge styrofoam ice chest. 21 for dinner. Hmmmmmmmmmm.
It was a challenge, but we managed to cram everything in and begin prep work for dinner as soon as we returned at 4:00. I planned a simple first night's dinner. We got four of the stove's 5 gas burners to light, and found that one of the two dishwashers wasn't working.
Appetizers were easy: gorgonzola dolce with rosemary flatbread, Parmigiano with honey, and some assorted salami and prosciutto.
The guests enjoyed the cheeses and lots of wine flowed, as the happy scent of pancetta cooking flowed through the villa. We met all of Gail's guests. They were intrigued, and I must say, I wasn't prepared for cameras flashing and 18 people asking us what we were making. It was rather amusing, as sometimes all we were "doing" was watching the pasta water boil!
We served several pounds of carbonara, and every plate was licked clean.
With the pasta, I had platters of a spinach, fennel, red onion, orange salad with a citrus vinegarette.
Dessert was an apple tart with a creme filling.
The crowd was quite appreciative of the first dinner. They had no idea what was coming!